Punjab is on the way to become a desert state in 25 yrs.

punjab is on the way to become a desert state in 25 yrs.

May 14, 2019.

In this modern era, there are many important issues which need the attention of everyone and one of them is the importance of water which is essential not only for human beings and animals but for vegetation is also. Many parts of the World already face scarcity of water. Punjab also faces the same thing.

A draft report of the Central Ground Water Board (North-Western region) has warned that Punjab will be converted into a desert within 25 years if the exploitation of the underground water resources continues at the current rate.

The report said, “At the current rate of extraction, all available groundwater resources till the depth of 300 meters in the state will end in 20-25 years.” It also said, ” All available groundwater resources at a depth of 100 meters will end within 10 years.”

The draft report prepared every four years. “ The latest reports on the declining water level in Punjab, including by the Central Ground Water Board, are alarming. It looks as if we are staring at the end of our world. Simply put, it is a red alert period and the hooter for saving water is blaring out of concern”, said, Kahan Singh Pannu, Punjab’s Agriculture Secretary.

Dr. SS Johal, an Eminent agriculture economist said, “The main culprit of the falling water levels is the rice crop. Farmers got free water and wastage was rampant. Water should be priced. At the same time, no agriculture can survive without subsidy under existing circumstances. But, it should not be on the water. The subsidy amount should be increased to Rs 20,000 crore from the existing Rs 8,000 crore. It should be distributed equally even to farmers who have no water pumps.”

According to a study of the researchers of the Punjab Agricultural University regarding groundwater fluctuations over the span of 28 years (1988-2016), there has been an average fall of 51 cm annually. National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA), National Institute of Hydrology, Roorkee, and Indian Institute of Technology (IIT) Kharagpur have released their reports at different points of time which highlighted the concern over non-renewable loss in groundwater volume.

“Farmers need to be compensated for not planting paddy. There is a good reason in the demand for de-notifying long-duration paddy varieties. Our university is promoting early maturing varieties”, said, Dr. Baldev Singh Dhillon, Vice-Chancellor of the Punjab Agricultural University, Ludhiana.

The president of Bharti Kisan Union (Rajewal) Balbir Singh Rajewal said, “Farmers don’t have a way out than using the underground water under existing conditions. Why is the state water being given to other non-riparian states? Unless Punjab was given its share of water or the government facilitates alternative crops by assuring a fixed price, Punjab will be doomed.”

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